Name: Smadar Landau
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
Industry: Technology & Telecommunications
Reason for starting? As consumers, we are presented with millions of choices when buying a product or service online. Google’s algorithm is designed to track search habits, collating the top results based on the individual user. With over two billion social media users worldwide, I couldn’t understand why a similar platform with these capabilities for social networks did not exist. Several years ago, I tried to purchase a GoPro online and had difficulty navigating through the endless consumer reviews available. It was time-consuming to locate genuine, reliable customer reviews, which were often inconsistent across the many e-commerce platforms. That’s when the idea for Feelter was born.
I thought if we could collect all of the user-generated content across social networks, analyze the data and display the findings alongside the products hosted on any e-commerce platform, it would not only provide a broad understanding of the consumer base – it would enable the consumer to make educated purchasing decisions.
How do you define success? There is no definitive goal of success – it is a way of life and consists of many small victories. It is essential to identify your objectives and streamline your determination and focus to achieve these milestones. To be successful, you must be prepared to be flexible and agile and remain informed of the changing trends in your industry. Success is a choice – and success is the result of intention and action.
Biggest success: Acquiring $1 million in funding was definitely a massive win for the organization. This was especially rewarding because I didn’t have any influential connections at the time and garnered this financial backing entirely on my own. When I acquired $350,000 at the Think and Drink event in Boston, it was off the strength of my pitch, and $300,000 came from a first place at G Startup Worldwide. I won $220,000 from soft layer after winning IBM’s competition in Boston, and $100,000 in funding came from an investor I schmoozed on a flight to Israel. Victories like these positioned Feelter for a successful launch and helped establish our credibility in the space.
What is your top challenge and how you have addressed it? One of the main challenges we’ve come across is positioning our company against larger, established businesses who have more leverage regarding advertising, marketing, selling etc. As a smaller business, we don’t have access to the same resources. However, our advantage as a company is our agility. We are able to react quickly to changes in the market, think outside the box and try out different approaches. As a result, we can regularly update our platform to keep it consistent and ahead of the game. Our flag is innovation.
Related: Why We Care About Women in Tech
Who is your most important role model? Jetsun Khandro Rinpoche. “If being a woman is an inspiration, use it. If it is an obstacle, try not to be bothered by it.” Her Eminence Jetsun Khandro Rinpoche’s position in the Buddhist world is entirely unique. She is one of the very few fully trained female Rinpoches (“precious masters”) in the Tibetan tradition. Born in 1967 as the daughter of the late Kyabjé Mindrolling Trichen, she, her younger sister and her mother were the only women growing up among 400 monks at her father’s monastery in India. The Mindrolling lineage is one of the rare Tibetan traditions that do not distinguish between male and female heirs.
Now one of the most influential and vibrant women teachers, Khandro Rinpoche travels tirelessly between her late father’s monastery and her own two nunneries in India, her American headquarters, Lotus Garden, in the Shenandoah Mountains in Virginia, and an ever-increasing number of Buddhist communities.
Edited by The Story Exchange